ELD compliance rates jump 10 points as April 1 deadline approaches

Date: Thursday, March 22, 2018
Source: Supply Chain Dive

CarrierLists just updated its ongoing electronic logging device (ELD) compliance rate survey, finding compliance rates rose 10 percentage points to 92% this week, as the April 1 enforcement deadline looms.Long haul vans, reefers and flatbeds are currently in the high 90s, while short haul and small fleets are in the mid 80s. The reason for tracking compliance, according to CarrierLists, is because drivers who have not implemented the ELD by April 1 will experience a 10-hour service outage penalty and could face further penalties if they still refuse to comply.

While the trucking industry is inching closer to full ELD compliance, there will likely still be many drivers without an ELD by April 1 — the day enforcement of the mandate begins.

Some industry leaders think once the deadline passes, more drivers will exit the industry, exacerbating the capacity shortage.

"The overall impact I think is going to reduce the drivers throughout North America," Maine Pointe Vice President Bob Gernon told Supply Chain Dive. "I think there's going to be a terrific amount of competition for that particular demographic (truck drivers) as infrastructure and overall construction picks up."

Many drivers still don't like the ELD, but according to a blog post written by Kuebix CEO Dan Clark, there are ways to persuade drivers to stay onboard, including "recruiting the recruited" (or, former military personnel who drove trucks) and "tapping into the STEM pipeline."

If tinkered recruiting strategies don't work, Clark writes, then shippers just may have to get "more creative" about how they ship goods to compensate for the trucking shortage — anything from using multiple modes of freight to strategizing specific routes to take advantage of the best rates and available capacity.

These strategies will be especially critical as some carriers are starting to charge intermodal fees.

High volumes and tight capacity means rates are likely to rise, which means compensation packages for truck drivers could improve, which could then lower the driver turnover rate.

But hypothetical situations aren't going to help the driver shortage and the capacity crunch right now. At the moment, it seems shippers have no choice but to make the best of their resources, data and 3PLs to navigate routes and pricing without losing money.

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